Feb 25, 2011 - 4:56 AM
Hello Merlin! I can understand that you're confused about all rail pass options. If it's important to you to be able to travel each day of your stay, without any limitations, a 15 day 1st class Swiss Saver Pass would be your best option. The Swiss Pass offers freedom and great ease of use, as regular trains, buses and boats in Switzerland are for free on all days of its validity period. Currently, there's a free upgrade to 1st class available for travellers from some countries.
The 1st class Swiss Saver Flexi Pass may be an option as well. This pass offers free travelling on limited number of days, and a 50% discount on all days in between your first and last day of free travelling. It may be a bit more economical than a Swiss Saver Pass, but it doesn't offer the possiblity to travel for free each day. So if you want to make other trips, that you haven't planned in advance, you may have to do these on days with a 50% discount.
In both cases, the 15 year old teenager can travel along for free if you order a free STS Family Card along with your Swiss Saver Pass/Swiss Saver Flexi Pass.
There is a pass that can be used in both Switzerland and Austria: the Eurail Austria-Switzerland Pass. However, this pass offers 4 to 10 days of free travelling, and no discounts on the remaining days of your stay, so I don't think this is what you're looking for. Instead, you may consider buying a separate pass for your stay in Austria, such as the Eurail Austria Pass which is available in a 6 day variant. The Eurail Austria Pass can be ordered along with your Swiss Saver Pass or Swiss Saver Flexi Pass.
You can purchase your passes online in advance, which can be cheaper than buying them on the spot due to exchange rates and local reseller pricing policies. This depends on your country of residence. Prices can be found by clicking on your country or residence under the header 'Order your Swiss (Flexi) Pass here' at the pages I linked to before. I don't know about purchase options for the Eurail Austria Pass, other than an online purchase. I don't think this pass can be bought locally.
I hope this helps you decide!
Last modified on Dec 24, 2021 - 10:42 AM by Arno